R.B. (Bob) Murphy Jr. passed away in Laurel, Mont., on March 9, 2016, at the age of 70. Bob was born on Feb. 8, 1946, in Seattle to R.B. (Butch) and Ethel Murphy.
Bob grew up in Columbus. He graduated from Columbus High School where he played football on a team that went undefeated for two seasons. Later he graduated from the University of Montana. He spent his entire life living and working in the Stillwater Valley and operated B&H Drilling in Fishtail for many years.
He loved the outdoors and the beauty of the Stillwater and the Beartooth Mountains. He was a gifted photographer and his pictures of the outdoors regularly appeared on Billings TV news.
His life was enriched for over 30 years through his association with Alcoholics Anonymous. He worked tirelessly to help others struggling with addiction and gained lifelong friendships throughout Montana and beyond with people whose lives he touched.
Bob was stricken with Parkinson’s Syndrome in his mid-50s and was forced to retire from B&H. During retirement he continued to pursue his photography and his work with AA and was able to travel extensively with his dear friend, Stephanie Lipton.
He is survived by his sisters Marlene Gruner of Fort Collins Colo., Judy Swarens (Bud) of Bellingham Wash., Patricia Steen (Buck) of Estacada, Ore., nieces Cassandra Cooper and Siani Steen, and nephews Jeff Swarens and Tim Swarens.
A celebration of Bob’s life will be held at St. Anthony’s Parish Hall at 700 Third Avenue in Laurel at 11 a.m. on March 26.